RaveThe Washington Post... [a] page-turner of a book ... we can thank Johnson for combing the archives, describing in vivid detail the life of pirates that we thought we knew—most likely through motion pictures—when in truth we didn’t ... Enemy of all Mankind covers lots of territory, including the beginnings of the British Empire, and it’s a good read, made all the better by Johnson’s clever storytelling and an unforgettable pirate named Henry Every.
MixedThe Washington PostScott’s book is a testimony to the amount of work that Sagan, who died in 1996, and his team put into the Golden Record, which was not vinyl but metal (copper), plated with gold. And while this is about the production of the record and not the Voyager mission itself, Scott masters the technical details, often with a touch of humor ... The narrative, though, is not without its problems ... So many characters weave through the story that it becomes especially annoying when lesser ones pop up with whom we aren’t on a first-name basis. One almost needs a program to figure out whom he is writing about ... Scott assumes we already know a lot about the Voyager mission, but it’s probably a safe bet to say we don’t.
PositiveThe Washington PostWhat Napoli captures so well is a woman who, having gotten so much for the simple act of saying 'I do,' decided that others were as equally entitled to her good fortune as she was — and acted accordingly ... Napoli has given us a book that is a snapshot of 20th-century America, particularly in the postwar years. That her two main characters were both rags-to-riches stories makes it all the more appealing. The author’s portrait of the eccentric Joan Kroc is particularly engaging.